Rome Travel Guide

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Thursday, May 12, 2016

Alone in the Rome Modern Art Gallery, with Cataldi and Marini

Galatea by Amleto Cataldi, 1925
We first discovered sculptor Amleto Cataldi (1982-1930) "in the weeds" in the Olympic Village (Villagio Olimpico) in Rome.  We later learned that his sculptures of athletes--placed seemingly haphazardly in green space (also known as weeds) in this athletes' housing built for the Rome 1960 Olympics--came from the 1911 Flaminio Stadium that was torn down to make way for the new Olympic stadium by Pier Luigi Nervi.

But... recently, on a visit to one of our favorite, lightly-visited museums in Rome, the Galleria d'Arte Moderna di Roma Capitale (the city's - as opposed to the state's - modern art gallery) we discovered a Cataldi sculpture virtually headlining the current exhibition on 1920s and 1930s Italian art, originally purchased for what was then called Galleria Mussolini.  Unlike his muscular athletes, Cataldi's Galatea here - a late, 1925 work -  is smooth and modern (note the hair-do).  The fish in her hand is appropriate because the statue was designed to be part of a fountain.

And, we can't resist another preview of this exhibition, "Fragment" by Marino Marini (1901-1980), who lived past the Fascist era.  This piece from 1929 is an excellent example of the artistic desire to replicate a ruin - to layer the past and the present.  It fits with the importance the Fascists gave to hearkening back to ancient Rome.  This fragment nude is a nice contrast to Cataldi's modern female nude.
Frammento by Marino Marini, 1929

 And when we stepped outside of the museum, we saw this creative courier and his "sculpted" vehicle.

The gallery is open Tuesday-Sunday 10 a.m. - 6.30 p.m.  Euro 7.5 for most of us.  via Francesco Crispi, 24 - between the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps, up the block from the Gagosian Gallery.  There won't be any crowds.  In fact, you may be the only one there.